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The Wolfram|Alpha Team

Set the Curve with Wolfram|Alpha!

August 12, 2013 —
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We here at Wolfram are, by and large, a bunch of nerds. This shouldn’t be that surprising, especially after looking at the people and fictional characters we’ve turned into mathematical curves on Wolfram|Alpha. Our curves of internet memes, cartoon and video game characters, celebrities, and mathematical formulas have been incredibly popular. As many of our fellow nerds get ready to go back to school, we’re celebrating nerddom and showing our appreciation for Wolfram’s users—by letting one of you decide the next curve to be featured in Wolfram|Alpha.

PSY Curve

Nerds are traditionally known for “setting the curve” in the classroom, so in the Wolfram|Alpha Set the Curve Contest, we’re giving you a chance to set our next curve in Wolfram|Alpha and win some other cool Wolfram prizes. It’s incredibly easy to enter.

As you may already know, Wolfram|Alpha Personal Analytics for Facebook provides a word cloud of your most frequently used words on Facebook. We want to see your nerdiest word cloud.

Whoever submits the nerdiest word cloud gets to enjoy 15 minutes of internet fame by picking something to be immortalized in Wolfram|Alpha as a mathematical curve. It could be a picture of yourself, your dog, whatever you choose, as long as it isn’t offensive or intended for a mature audience.

Why Not Zoidberg?


We’re also giving out some Wolfram goodies and Wolfram|Alpha Pro subscriptions to several runner-up winners. At least one runner-up prize will be awarded to a random entry, so even if you’re not sure if your word cloud is the nerdiest, it’s still a good idea to participate!

To enter, head over to Wolfram|Alpha and type in “my facebook report.”

Analyze My Facebook Data

Click “Analyze My Facebook Data,” then scroll down until you see your word cloud.

word cloud

Click “Full Size,” then, from the menu at the bottom, select “Clip ‘n Share” (the three dots on the far right). Click “Create Permanent Shareable Page,” and voila!

Tweet a link to your curve on Twitter (using the #SetTheCurve hashtag), post it on Tumblr with the SetTheCurve tag, comment with your link on our Facebook Page, or just include it in a comment to this post, and you’re in.

We’re taking a pretty broad definition of what counts as “nerdy” (and staying away from the whole nerd vs. geek debate); if you’re hoping to win a contest hosted by Wolfram|Alpha for the nerdiest Facebook word cloud, you’re probably a good candidate. Taking a look at the word cloud above, for example, we’ve got a bit of nerdiness between “space,” “fantasy,” and “trivia,” but we’re sure that you all can completely out-nerd us with your own clouds. If you want to proclaim your love for nerdy topics on Facebook in order to manipulate your word cloud—well, that’s pretty nerdy, too.

Please send in your entries by August 30; limit one entry per person. Once all the clouds have been gathered (See what we did there? Not kidding on the nerdy thing.), we’ll judge the entries and select a winner within the next couple of weeks.

TL;DR: Send us your nerdiest word cloud using Wolfram|Alpha’s Facebook Personal Analytics by August 23 for your chance to pick our next Wolfram|Alpha curve.

We’ll also be posting over the next couple of weeks about other cool ways to use Wolfram|Alpha and other Wolfram technologies to (literally) set the curve in your own classes, so stay tuned!


Interesting, I went through all the process of giving you authorization of accessing my personal data just to discover that in my case Wolfram|Alpha generates any kind of visualizations but the wordcloud! That’s disappointing… =.=

Posted by Lazza August 12, 2013 at 10:53 am

Although I don’t have the Facebook usage level needed to form a word cloud, might I suggest a curve for good old ? That beard of his should make some interesting arcs.

Posted by Andrew Walters August 12, 2013 at 11:08 am
Posted by Ted Celis August 14, 2013 at 1:41 pm

Well, I didn’t read anything about language requirements so, here’s my participation ๐Ÿ˜€

In fact, there are english and spanish words in my cloud…pretty nerdy ha? ๐Ÿ˜›

Posted by Santiago August 14, 2013 at 4:30 pm

I think mine’s reasonably nerdy… Flickr, “found free friends”, “give another buddy”, Coke, comic, computer, Twitter, bacon, Windows, Facebook, awesome, LOL, Con, SDCC, phone, “Best Buy”, Samsung, updates, device, email…

Posted by Jason August 14, 2013 at 10:04 pm
Posted by Hundung Sanasam August 15, 2013 at 7:03 am
Posted by Cogent August 15, 2013 at 7:37 am
Posted by Christopher Akiki August 16, 2013 at 2:41 pm

I would like to see an Ayn Rand curve.

Here’s my application:

Posted by Tomer Ravid August 16, 2013 at 3:40 pm
Posted by Richard Johnstone August 19, 2013 at 11:01 am
Why I used a word composed of random letters that takes up a whole line I will never know…

Posted by George Kaye August 30, 2013 at 10:47 am

being an Indonesian, my word cloud clearly have a lot of Indonesian words.. oh well, I got to see a lot of interesting data too, so thanks..

Posted by Arisanto G Pratama June 20, 2014 at 3:08 pm